By Barry Janoff
March 14, 2014: In its first March Madness men's basketball tournament as an official partner of the NCAA, Burger King is hitting the court running with a multi-platform activation that will go heavy on social media and focus around a campaign that enables people to "Watch Like a King."
As the official burger of the NCAA and Final Four, Burger King said that its campaign would give people the opportunity to enhance their Big Dance experience by offering prizes including $100 Burger King Crown Cards, mobile phone projectors, flat screen TVs from NCAA partner LG, tickets to the NCAA Final Four and a chance to "meet a basketball legend."
“At Burger King, we’re rooted in feeding our guests great-tasting food the way they want it, when they want it – and our 'Watch Like a King' campaign is based on that same notion," Eric Hirschhorn, CMO North America for Burger King Worldwide, said in a statement. "We want to upgrade the fan watching experience."
The fast-feeder is directing people through a marketing campaign to tweet the reason(s) they feel they deserve to watch the basketball games like a king. Winning entires will be selected now through April 7. (Details here.)
An intro commercial follows a guy in his office whose quest to watch March Madness causes havoc among his co-workers, disrupts an important meeting and even creates a mess in the lunch room. It works out for him when the Burger King hands him tickets to a game. (See the full spot here.)
A second commercial breaks this weekend starring Chris Webber, former Michigan State and NBA star and current basketball commentator and analyst. In addition to the "Watch Like a King" push, Webber will support the limited Burger King Final Four 2 for $5 menu offering at participating Burger King locations.
According to Webber, “What fuels the players on the court is the passion of the fans and Burger King gets that. Being part of the Burger King 'Watch Like a King' campaign and having the opportunity to reward fans for their fandom is an amazing experience."
Among the early responses to the Burger King request at its Twitter site, which comes with the hash tag #WatchLikeAKing, on why people want to watch like a king:
"Because I watched the kids while my wife had a ladies' night out instead of watching my alma mater's basketball game."
"I deserve to #WatchLikeAKing because March Madness is my Christmas, birthday, New Year and every holiday in one."
"Because my kids are always watching cartoons! I need to #WatchLikeaKing and get some #metime."
“We know March Madness is about the fans, games and of course the student-athletes, so we’re celebrating by partnering with the NCAA to provide the fan base with a viewing experience fit for a king," said Hirschhorn.
The year-round partnership with the NCAA includes Burger King sponsorships of all 89 NCAA championships, including the NCAA Men’s Final Four.
Official NCAA corporate champions are AT&T, Capital One and Coca-Cola. In addition to Burger King and LG, official corporate partners are Allstate, Buffalo Wild Wings, Buick, Enterprise, Infiniti, Lowe’s, Nabisco, Northwestern Mutual, Reese’s (Hershey’s), Unilever and UPS.
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